Eli Manning has been doing what many people have been doing these days: homeschooling his kids.
He’s more than 12 years removed from leading the Giants over Tom Brady and the Patriots to win the Super Bowl in 2008, eight years removed from doing it again in 2012 and just a few months removed from taking the last snap of his NFL career.
Now, he’s tucked away in Mississippi with his family, far away from the football fields and bright lights of New York, trying to figure out what’s next.
Last week, the former Giants quarterback gave some insight when he joined 115 military members from across the globe and their families for an online Q&A.
“I know one thing: I don’t want to be an NFL coach,” Manning said during a USO Zoom call (per ESPN). “I’ve seen what our coaches do and the hours they put in, and I enjoy being with my family and enjoy coaching some of their sports teams.”
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Manning said he hasn’t even thrown a football since his retirement began. Instead, he’s spent his time with his four kids while he considers the possibilities for the next chapter in his life.
“I really wanted to try to take a year off and just try to gather my bearings and get settled with my family and figure out what I want to do in that next chapter,” Manning said.
Broadcasting could be an option. After all, his brother Peyton just turned down a lucrative offer to be in the “Monday Night Football” booth. It might be easier to start with figuring out what he doesn’t want to do, and he appears to have one thing at the top of that list.
Manning ruled out coaching at the NFL level, but he also seemed intrigued by the possibility of coaching high schoolers. He has helped run the famous Manning Passing Academy with his family and gotten experience coaching that age range.
“I always really enjoy working with freshmen in high school and getting them to learn how to play quarterback at a higher level,” he said. “You see the difference when they come in that first day and leave four days later, and the growth that they’ve made in that time.”
For now, though, Manning says he will take the year off and enjoy retirement. At some point, he expects to be involved in some capacity with the Giants, the organization for which he played his entire 16-year pro career.
“Football is my love and passion,” Manning said. “It is all I’ve known for the last 25 years and all I’ve been doing. I don’t think I can stray too far away from that.”